NOTES FROM THE FIELD: Microsoft sees the light, HP study's not right

NOTES FROM THE FIELD: Microsoft sees the light, HP study's not right

It seems I've been duped again. First it was that Romanian couple allegedly naming their baby Yahoo. Now it's the yarn about a businessman from Little Rock, who supposedly bought the Indian prime minister's house. Turns out this was an April Fools' Day joke by the Hindustan Times that got picked up a few weeks later by Reuters, Yahoo News, and yours truly, among others. It appears even April Fools' has been outsourced to India. Is the Easter Bunny next?

Queer Aye for the Gates Guys: Microsoft has seen the light and apparently it's pink. After a public spanking and a petition signed by 1500 employees, the Repentant Redmonites have reversed their stance and say they will now support state legislation prohibiting discrimination against gays (though too late for this year's bill, which lost by a single vote). I suspect the claims by anti-gay activists that Microsoft was now their hand puppet may have had something to do with it. Bill Gates answers to no mere mortal.

An Offer They Cannot Refuse: In an even more stunning reversal, Microsoft has invited the open source community for a sit-down to drink grappa and eat some cannelloni. You know that scene in mob films where the godfather invites all his rivals for a meeting, excuses himself to go to the loo, and guys with submachine guns show up? My advice to open sourcers: If Ballmer leaves the room, get ready to dive under the table.

Taking Pot Shots: A report claiming that smoking da chronic makes you less addled than reading email has been unravelled by the MindHacks blog, which claims the results don't stand up to scrutiny. It seems the HP-sponsored study didn't account for post-marijuana productivity loss from gazing at the Windows Starfield screen saver or scrounging through desk drawers for that lost box of Raisinettes. In related news, a UK court has sentenced the leader of the Budmonkey online cannabis ring to five years in prison. There's no truth to the rumour the ring was busted while making deliveries to HP.

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